Kathy Calvin, president and CEO of the United Nations Foundation, released the following statement on the introduction of the Girls Count Act of 2013. This legislation supports improved and sustainable systems in developing countries to ensure that girls can receive birth certificates and other forms of identification.
“From its creation, the United Nations Foundation has believed in the tremendous potential of investing in adolescent girls. Making sure that girls count is a critical way to ensure that their rights and needs are recognized. When a girl is accounted for by her government, there is a greater chance that she will have access to education, health, and social services, and later in life be able to vote, work, and own property.
“We commend the leadership of Congressman Steve Chabot (R-OH), Congresswoman Lois Frankel (D-FL), Congresswoman Betty McCollum (D-MN), and Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ) for introducing the Girls Count Act of 2013, a call to making girls count a U.S. foreign policy priority, so that all children – regardless of their gender – can take part in an active and thriving society.
“Through the UN Foundation’s Girl Up campaign, hundreds of thousands of youth across the United States are already asking their members of Congress to make this a priority in U.S. foreign policy. Everyone must get involved to make sure girls everywhere are seen and heard.
“For too long, girls have been left out of the global agenda and ignored by too many. We must stand with them and make sure they are recognized and their rights are protected. It’s the right thing to do – and it’s the absolutely necessary thing to do to end poverty, prevent human trafficking, and build a more just and peaceful world.”
About The United Nations Foundation
The United Nations Foundation builds public-private partnerships to address the world’s most pressing problems, and broadens support for the United Nations through advocacy and public outreach. Through innovative campaigns and initiatives, the Foundation connects people, ideas, and resources to help the UN solve global problems. The Foundation was created in 1998 as a U.S. public charity by entrepreneur and philanthropist Ted Turner and now is supported by global corporations, foundations, governments, and individuals. For more information, visit www.unfoundation.org.